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Vernon Richards | Quality Coach

Vernon Richards | Quality Coach

November 4, 2022

10 Things I've Seen Testers Do To Get Through A Recession Or A Redundancy

This has been on my mind for a while now.

We're seeing lots of tech companies laying people off. Stripe, Lyft and, of course, Twitter, to name just a few. Even my employer has been through a round of redundancies recently. After 20 years as a tester, it's at least the 6th company I've been at that has decided to let people go.

It's rough.

So I thought about it and decided to share some things I've seen work either for myself or others in the past. I hope this list is helpful:

  1. Network, network, network: Many job opportunities happen via word of mouth and don't hit official job boards.

  2. Upskill: Try not to leave a company with the same skills you had when you arrived. TAU, MoT, Codecademy, FreeCodeCamp, The Coders Guild, Makers Academy, Treehouse. And they're just the online resources.

  3. Get support: It can be a hard slog. Make sure that you have people you can lean on for emotional support.

  4. Take some time to mentally process what happened: You'll make better decisions on what to do once you have a clear head.

  5. Start looking as soon as possible: At the risk of immediately contradicting myself, the sooner you start looking, the sooner you'll find something (it took me 3 months to get an offer in 2009 versus 2 weeks before that particular recession). It's a balance and not an easy one to strike.

  6. Tell people you're available: Remember those word-of-mouth opportunities? They won't reach you as easily if you don't broadcast your availability!

  7. Network, network, network: Yes, I'm mentioning it again! Start now, even if you're in a role.

  8. Build an emergency fund: Find a way to save 3-6 months' worth of bills (shout out @ThePirateTester!).

  9. Keep your CV/resume up to date: Just in case you need it in a hurry.

  10. Get legal advice: It can be wise to seek legal counsel if you feel like you've been treated unfairly (and sometimes even if you do think you've been treated fairly!). And I mean a real lawyer too! Not your drinking buddy from the pub!

  11. Remember, this too shall pass: Hang in there, friend.